Seized Wildlife Trafficker Notebooks Give Unique Insight

“Seized Notebooks give unique insight” at first when I read these words in the following press release from TRAFFIC-Malaysia I thought, Wow!  I’m about to read what the Malaysian government discovered from its recent seizure of Anson Wong’s laptop and cell phones. 

Or, I’m about to read the results of the Malaysian anti-corruption agency’s recent raid on wildlife department officer Misliah Mohd. Basir’s office (they seized a computer, too). 

Instead I read this fascinating window on the pangolin trade–all from a single syndicate’s notebooks.  The government of Sabah operates independently of mainland Malaysia’s government on many wildife issues.  That is why we can have such a good example of NGO-Government cooperation on the one hand and such poor progress on opening up Anson and Misliah’s files to public scrutiny, on the other.  Peninsular Malaysians should demand the same transparency as on Sabah. 

Seized notebooks give unique insight into scale of illicit pangolin trade
 
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 28th October 2010—Stunning figures in traffickers’ logbooks indicate massive illegal capture and trade in endangered pangolins or scaly anteaters, finds a new TRAFFIC study.

A Preliminary Assessment of Pangolin Trade in Sabah analyses logbooks seized following a raid by Sabah Wildlife Department in 2009 on a syndicate’s pangolin trafficking premises in Kota Kinabalu, the capital city of the Malaysian State of Sabah in north Borneo.
 
The logbooks reveal that 22,200 pangolins were killed and 834.4 kg of pangolin scales were supplied to the syndicate between May 2007 and January 2009…

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